Charges Dropped in Corral Pot-Possession Case

Charges Dropped in Corral Pot-Possession Case
Posted by CN Staff on September 23, 2005 at 07:10:38 PT
By Brian Seals, Sentinel Staff Writer
Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel
Santa Cruz -- Misdemeanor pot possession charges against local medical marijuana advocate Valerie Corral were dropped Thursday, but the fight isn’t completely over.Aided by the American Civil Liberties Union, Corral said she will battle to get back the confiscated pot and seek a change in how the city of Burbank addresses medical marijuana laws.
Corral was charged July 27 for possessing a small amount, about 5 grams, of pot while passing through security at the Bob Hope Airport in Burbank.She along with husband Mike are co-founders of the Santa Cruz-based Wo/men’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana.Though only a misdemeanor that carried a $100 fine, Corral planned to fight the charge and go to a jury trial.At a pre-trial hearing Thursday in Los Angeles County Superior Court the charges were dropped, said Anjuli Verma, advocacy director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Drug Law Reform Project in Santa Cruz. "What would have come out in court is that the city of Burbank has a policy of prosecuting medical marijuana patients they know are innocent," Verma said.Corral and the ACLU say they plan to try to get prosecutors to stipulate that she is innocent and will seek return of the marijuana that was confiscated."We’re going to get our medicine back," Corral said by cell phone Thursday. "Every gram is important for this organization."Corral and the ACLU also want Burbank to abide by California’s 1996 Compassionate Use Act, Verma said. Corral’s pot was in a small plastic bag along wither her Santa Cruz County-issued medical marijuana identification card.A phone call to the Burbank City Attorney’s office was not returned.California voters approved the Compassionate Use Act, or Proposition 215, in 1996.A U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June held that federal authorities may prosecute federal marijuana charges regardless of what laws a state has passed.California Attorney General Bill Lockyer subsequently opined that the ruling had no impact on the validity of California law.For more information about Valerie Corral, visit: Santa Cruz Sentinel (CA)Author: Brian Seals, Sentinel Staff WriterPublished: September 23, 2005 Copyright: 2005 Santa Cruz SentinelContact: editorial santa-cruz.comWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:ACLU Charges Against Activist Dropped City Attorney Drops Charges At The Last Minute Activist May Sue Over Bust at Airport
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Comment #7 posted by OverwhelmSam on September 26, 2005 at 03:29:28 PT
The more people learn of their rights, the fewer people actually get charged with marijuana crimes. Just saying no to searches and plea bargains goes a long way. Not to mention appealing every adverse lower court decision and abuse of discretion. And then sue them for damages.
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Comment #6 posted by MikeC on September 25, 2005 at 14:42:49 PT
Thank you Max...
Although it was a sweet victory it came at the expense of my house being raided with guns drawn. In front of my three children and an outside gathering of neighbors. was a sweet victory!
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Comment #5 posted by Max Flowers on September 25, 2005 at 13:21:17 PT
Excellent, glad to hear that you did that and it worked.
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Comment #4 posted by MikeC on September 25, 2005 at 08:15:29 PT
That's exactly what I did three years ago and the charges (cultivation of three plants) were dropped. 
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Comment #3 posted by afterburner on September 25, 2005 at 07:38:00 PT
Cannabis Prohibition Is on the Ropes
The judicial system is caught between the rock of UN treaties and the hard place of citizen support for cannabis law reforms, past, present and future. The PTB's have sown the folly of superstitious, racist cannabis prohibition and reaped the whirlwind of lawlessness, corruption, mistrust of government. Their credibility after years of lying that "marijuana has no medical use" is at an all time low, and the federal, state and local budgets are leaking like the levees of New Orleans. It's not a pretty picture, but "it's always darkest before the dawn." They cannot afford to dismiss us and our progressive solutions for the world's future any longer.
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Comment #2 posted by OverwhelmSam on September 25, 2005 at 05:54:19 PT
Everyone Arrested For Marijuana Use Should Do This
If every adult arrested for minor marijuana possession took their case to Jury trial, With close to a million arrest a year, the Judicial system would be forced to give up. How many Jurors would even convict for a Joint? Cases like Valerie's would have the same conclusion - charges dropped. It's inconcievable to me that people take a plea bargain under threat's, when there's a good chance they'll win in a Jury trail. The cost to prosecute for a little bag of marijuana is astronomical if it goes to Jury trail, especially now that Juries are learning of their right to vote Not Guilty in spite of the law, facts or evidence.
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Comment #1 posted by Max Flowers on September 23, 2005 at 09:46:27 PT
You go, Valerie
- A phone call to the Burbank City Attorney’s office was not returned. -Cowards. I'm sure they would have had a comment for the press had they convicted her instead of chickening out of trial! 
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